How To Store and Dispose of Paint

How To Store and Dispose of Paint

Sep 8, 2010
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Great Valspar Resources for Painting:

What's the best way to store paint? You may suggest that we stuff it in the basement and forget about it, but we think there are better ways. Here are a few hints:

For starters, it's good to label your cans. You may think it's obvious that your living room is painted Dove White and the bedroom painted Dover White, but in three years that information will be lost to the mists of time. Label your cans on top by room. And spelling counts.

Storing Paint:

  1. Properly seal the can. Make sure that you wipe excess paint from the rim of the can. Cover the can opening with plastic wrap. Put the lid securely in place and tap it down with a mallet. Store the can upside down.
  2. Temperature extremes may affect paint so that it will not be usable. Do not allow paint to freeze. Extreme heat and cold will affect how well paint works. Store paint where temperatures are moderate.
  3. Brush a small amount of paint onto the outside of the can, with the color name and number, so that you will remember what color it is.
  4. Keep paint in a safe location - away from children and pets.


Paint Disposal:

  1. Check local ordinances and waste hauler regulations.
  2. Read paint can instructions for proper disposal.
  3. Dry latex paint generally can be thrown out with your regular household trash, if properly dried.
  4. If there is less than ¼ can of paint remaining, remove the lid and place the can in a well-ventilated area. The paint will dry in a few days.
  5. For larger volumes of paint, allow a longer drying time. You can also add shredded newspaper, sand, sawdust, cat litter or paint solidifier to the can. The paint must be completely dry before disposal.
  6. Another way of drying out latex paint is to punch holes in the top of the can, and leave the can in a dry area to let the paint dry for a couple of weeks.
  7. For latex paint, lids should be removed from paint cans before they are put in the trash to let waste haulers know the paint is dry.
  8. Oil-based paint, varnish or paint thinners are generally considered hazardous waste. Check with local ordinances, and read label instructions before disposal. Only dispose through your local designated household hazardous waste programs.


(Image: Courtesy of Valspar)

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